Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB2985
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Full Text of HB2985  102nd General Assembly


Sen. Jacqueline Y. Collins

Filed: 3/18/2022





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2    AMENDMENT NO. ______. Amend House Bill 2985 by replacing
3everything after the enacting clause with the following:
4    "Section 1. Short title; references to Act.
5    (a) Short title. This Act may be cited as the Murdered
6Children Funeral and Burial Assistance Act.
7    (b) References to Act. This Act may be referred to as the
8Mychal Moultry, Jr. Funeral and Burial Assistance Act.
9    Section 5. Purpose; findings.
10    (a) Gun violence is the leading cause of death for
11children and teenagers in Illinois.
12    (b) Parents and guardians who experience the death of a
13child by gun violence face the painful process of bereavement
14while also bearing the responsibilities of planning a funeral
15and paying for funeral and burial expenses, usually through
16some form of debt.



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1    (c) While the State assists the families of murdered
2children with funeral and burial expenses, assistance is
3primarily in the form of a reimbursement to the family after a
4formal application is submitted. After submission, the
5application undergoes a lengthy evaluation process by a review
6committee and a subsequent hearing before an administrative
7court. The process takes months, even years, before a final
8decision is rendered, during which time the victim's family
9can incur an overwhelming amount of debt.
10    (d) This debt is particularly burdensome for low-income
11families, who struggle to repay the debt while continuing to
12provide for the family's basic needs. Many families rely on
13in-kind donations to support their basic needs while they work
14to pay off funeral and burial expenses.
15    (e) It is the intent of this Act to assist the families of
16children murdered in Illinois with funeral and burial expenses
17by having the State issue direct payments to funeral
18establishments and cemetery authorities instead of having the
19victim's family struggle to pay the cost and wait for
20reimbursement. Direct payments will enable families to secure
21burial rights and funeral and burial services and merchandise
22without enduring significant financial hardship and debt.
23    (f) This Act provides for expedited processing and payment
24of all disbursement requests for child victim funeral and
25burial expenses.



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1    Section 10. Definitions. In this Act:
2    "Burial rights" means rights of internment, inurnment, or
4    "Cemetery authority" means any individual or legal entity
5that owns or controls cemetery lands or property that provides
6burial rights and burial services and merchandise to a child
7victim consistent with the Cemetery Oversight Act.
8    "Child victim" means a person under 17 years of age killed
9in this State by a firearm as a result of first degree murder,
10second degree murder, voluntary manslaughter of an unborn
11child, involuntary manslaughter, and involuntary manslaughter
12of an unborn child.
13    "Department" means the Department of Human Services.
14    "Eligible survivor" means the parent or guardian of a
15child victim, or anyone living in the household of a child
16victim in a relationship with the victim that is substantially
17similar to that of a parent, who has a household income of less
18than 150% of the federal poverty level, qualifies for payment
19of funeral and burial expenses under this Act, and has or
20shares the authority to direct the disposition of the remains
21of the victim pursuant to the Disposition of Remains Act.
22    "Funeral and burial expenses" means expenses that include,
23but are not limited to, the transport of deceased human
24remains to a funeral establishment; the preparation of
25deceased human remains for burial, including cleaning,
26disinfecting, and embalming; the preparation, direction, and



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1supervision of the burial, cremation, or other disposition of
2deceased human remains, including furnishing a casket, vault,
3mausoleum, columbarium, or urn; the administration of funeral
4arrangements, including providing printed materials, providing
5transportation of the deceased human remains to the burial
6site, and furnishing necessary facilities and equipment; and
7any other service related to the carrying out of funeral or
8burial services that the Department may allow, if consistent
9with the law, up to the total allowable amount of disbursement
10under Section 40.
11    "Funeral establishment" means a State-licensed funeral
12home, funeral chapel, funeral parlor, or other business that
13provides funeral and burial services to a child victim.
14    Section 15. Felon as victim or survivor. An eligible
15survivor's or child victim's criminal history or felony status
16shall not automatically prevent an award for payment of the
17child victim's funeral and burial expenses.
18    Section 20. Additional powers; Department of Human
19Services. In addition to other powers and duties set forth in
20this Act and other powers exercised by the Department, the
21Department shall conduct a review of disbursement requests
22submitted by a funeral establishment or cemetery authority,
23which includes verification of the eligible survivor's
24household income, verification of the child victim's death



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1certificate, and a review of the statement of goods and
2services provided by the funeral establishment or cemetery
3authority. Upon conclusion of the review, the Department shall
4provide the funeral establishment or cemetery authority with a
5payment determination letter. The Department shall disburse
6payment to a funeral establishment or cemetery authority.
7    Section 25. Right to disbursement.
8    (a) With respect to the provision of burial rights and
9funeral and burial services and merchandise within the
10applicable scope of practice, a funeral establishment or
11cemetery authority is entitled to a disbursement under this
12Act if within one year of the occurrence of the crime upon
13which a disbursement request is made, the funeral
14establishment or cemetery authority submits the request to the
15Department on a form prescribed in accordance with Section 30
16as furnished by the Department.
17    (b) The Department may accept a request presented after
18the period provided in subsection (a) if it determines that
19the funeral establishment or cemetery authority had a good
20cause for a delay.
21    Section 30. Disbursement request requirements.
22    (a) A disbursement request shall include:
23        (1) the name and address of the eligible survivor and
24    his or her relationship to the child victim;



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1        (2) the date and nature of the crime on which the
2    disbursement request is based;
3        (3) the nature and extent of the injuries sustained by
4    the child victim, and the names and addresses of those
5    giving any medical and hospitalization treatment to the
6    child victim;
7        (4) a copy of the child victim's death certificate;
8        (5) an affidavit of facts of death;
9        (6) documentation verifying an eligible survivor's
10    household income;
11        (7) a copy of the invoice detailing funeral and burial
12    expenses, including any applicable taxes, surcharges, and
13    fees;
14        (8) releases authorizing the surrender to the
15    Department of reports, documents and other information
16    relating to matters specified under this Act and rules
17    adopted in accordance with this Act; and
18        (9) such other information as the Department
19    reasonably requires.
20    (b) The Department may require that materials
21substantiating the facts stated in the disbursement request be
22submitted with that request.
23    (c) A funeral establishment or cemetery authority, on its
24own volition, may file an amended request or additional
25substantiating materials to correct inadvertent errors or
26omissions at any time before the original request has been



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1disposed of by the Department. In either case, the filing of
2additional information or of an amended request shall be
3considered for the purpose of this Act to have been filed at
4the same time as the original request.
5    Section 35. Additional materials requested. If a funeral
6establishment or cemetery authority does not submit all
7materials substantiating its disbursement request as requested
8by the Department, the Department shall notify the
9establishment in writing of the specific additional items of
10information or materials required and that it has 30 days in
11which to furnish those items to the Department. No
12disbursement shall be made for any portion of the request from
13a funeral establishment or cemetery authority that is not
14substantiated by the establishment or authority. An
15establishment or authority may request an extension of time
16from the Department prior to the expiration of the 30-day
18    Section 40. Amount of disbursement.
19    (a) The total amount of disbursement for funeral and
20burial expenses for a child victim shall be no more than
21$10,000, to be apportioned between the funeral establishment
22and cemetery authority by those eligible survivors authorized
23to direct the disposition of remains pursuant to the
24Disposition of Remains Act.



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1    (b) Upon submitting a disbursement request to the
2Department, and upon the Department's review of such request
3verifying that a survivor is an eligible survivor, a funeral
4establishment and cemetery authority shall each receive
5disbursement from the Department in the amount of the total
6cost of burial rights and funeral services and merchandise
7provided, up to the allocation amount. The Department shall
8process all payment vouchers within 30 days of submission of a
9complete disbursement request, and shall pay all such vouchers
10within 30 days of receipt. All disbursement requests that are
11not paid within 60 days shall thereafter accrue interest at
12the rate set by the Prompt Payment Act.
13    (c) Beginning on July 1, 2024, the maximum allowable
14disbursement amount shall be increased each year by an amount
15equal to any increase in the general inflation, as determined
16by the index published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the
17United States Department of Labor that measures the average
18change in prices of goods and services purchased by all urban
19consumers, United States city average, all items, 1982-84 =
21    Section 45. Prohibition against double payment;
22recordkeeping; payment recapture.
23    (a) If any funeral and burial expenses are paid under this
24Act, no award for such assistance shall be granted to any party
25in relation to funeral and burial expenses for the same child



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1victim under the Crime Victims Compensation Act or the
2Department of Human Services Funeral and Burial Benefits
4    (b) No person or entity receiving assistance under this
5Act shall receive or retain a duplicate award for funeral and
6burial expenses for a child victim from any State agency or
7agencies. For the purposes of this Section, a duplicate award
8is one that results in a total award from the State for the
9cost of funeral and burial expenses for a child victim in
10excess of that authorized by the Department. To prevent such
11duplicate awards, the Department shall maintain an electronic
12record of each disbursement to a funeral establishment or
13cemetery authority and provide access to such records to any
14State agency providing funeral or burial assistance to
15Illinois residents.
16    (c) The Department is authorized to contract with
17third-party entities to conduct payment recapture audits to
18detect and recapture payments made in error or as a result of
19fraud or abuse. A payment recapture audit shall include the
20process of identifying improper payments paid to a funeral
21establishment or cemetery authority or to an eligible survivor
22whereby accounting specialists examine payment records and
23uncover duplicate payments, payments for services not
24rendered, overpayments, payments for unauthorized services,
25and fictitious vendors. This audit may include the use of
26professional and specialized auditors on a contingency basis,



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1with compensation tied to the identification of misspent
3    Section 50. Notice to public of available assistance.
4    (a) The Department shall develop a brochure informing the
5public of the existence of funeral and burial assistance for
6the families of murdered children under this Act and make the
7brochure available on its website.
8    (b) Any law enforcement agency that investigates an
9offense committed in this State shall inform the parent or
10guardian of the child victim concerning the availability of
11assistance for funeral and burial expenses under this Act and
12advise such persons that any information concerning this Act
13may be obtained from the Department.
14    Section 900. The Illinois Public Aid Code is amended by
15adding Section 12-4.11-5 as follows:
16    (305 ILCS 5/12-4.11-5 new)
17    Sec. 12-4.11-5. Murdered Children Funeral and Burial
18Assistance Program. The Department of Human Services shall by
19rule administer the Murdered Children Funeral and Burial
20Assistance Program. Eligibility for the Murdered Children
21Funeral and Burial Assistance Program shall be limited to
22those individuals as described in the Murdered Children
23Funeral and Burial Assistance Act.



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1    Beginning July 1, 2023, the Department of Human Services
2shall make eligibility determinations for the Murdered
3Children Funeral and Burial Assistance Program and, subject to
4appropriation, shall make disbursements for eligible cases to
5a funeral establishment or cemetery authority as provided
6under the Murdered Children Funeral and Burial Assistance Act.
7    Section 999. Effective date. This Act takes effect upon
8becoming law.".